CIA Admits to Destroying 92 (Rather Than 2) Tapes of Interrogations

torture -abu ghraibThe Bush Administration previously told a federal court that there were two tapes of interrogations destroyed showing waterboarding and other brutal treatment of detainees. It has now admitted that at least 92 tapes were destroyed in what appears a clear and knowing effort to destroy evidence.

In a letter to a federal court in New York, Acting U.S. Attorney Lev Dassin admitted that “The CIA can now identify the number of videotapes that were destroyed. Ninety two videotapes were destroyed.” That is just 90 tapes more than what the CIA previously told the court.

As discussed earlier, CIA officials ordered the destruction to “minimize legal issues.”

For the full story, click here.

24 thoughts on “CIA Admits to Destroying 92 (Rather Than 2) Tapes of Interrogations”

  1. Thank you Jill!

    BushCo better get used to testifying, under oath, in open court about their actions.

    Just a guess but Karl the hired hand Rove will turn out to be the lynch pin for the gang that couldn’t govern straight.

  2. This is some good news. The judiciary strikes back!

    “DENVER – Former Vice President Dick Cheney will have to give his account – under oath, in a legal deposition – of what happened at a Colorado ski resort in June 2006 when a man stepped up to protest the Iraq war and was arrested, a federal district judge ruled Monday.
    The protester, Steven Howards, sued five Secret Service agents in Mr. Cheney’s security detail after the encounter at the Beaver Creek resort. Mr. Howards’s lawyers have argued that Mr. Cheney’s version of events is crucial to getting at the truth.

    Mr. Cheney’s lawyers had responded – successfully until Monday’s ruling by Judge Christine M. Arguello in Denver – that a deposition was unnecessary. A federal magistrate agreed with Mr. Cheney last April; Judge Arguello’s ruling reversed that decision.

    Mr. Howards has admitted to approaching Mr. Cheney and saying the administration’s policies in Iraq were disgusting, or words to that effect. He walked away unhindered by Secret Service agents, but he was arrested by them about 10 minutes later for what they said was the “assault” on the vice president.”

    http://www.commondreams.org/headline/2009/03/03-0

  3. I want to add one last thing. Glenn Greenwald gives an excellent discussion on how Obama is affirming the princple of unchecked executive power. We must keep aware of this and stop it. This type of power has no place in a democracy. Here’s a short clip and link:

    “According to Obama, only the President has the power to decide what is done with classified information, and neither courts nor Congress have any power at all to do anything but politely request that the President change his mind. Therefore, the President has the unilateral, unchallengeable power to prevent any judicial challenges to his actions by simply declaring that the relevant evidence is a secret and refusing to turn it over to a court, even if ordered to do so. That’s the argument which the Obama DOJ is now aggressively advancing — all in order to block any judicial adjudication of Bush’s now-dormant NSA program.”

    http://www.salon.com/opinion/greenwald/

  4. That’s true Buddha, and we’ve only seen 9 of the memos. The ACLU is calling for the release of them all. It’s clear cheneybush were aiming for a dictatorship.

  5. In fact, the next time the government raids a building, it had better be AEI.

  6. Mike A.,

    Thank you for what you said. It means a lot to me. I’m linking to one of the participants in the NYT on the necessity for prosecutions. There are also other opinions in the same piece that disagree with this strongly worded piece, but I think Mr. Ratner is correct. Especially important is his argument that prosecution is not just about the past but the way to prevent torture in the future.

    “Michael Ratner is president of the Center for Constitutional Rights and author of “The Prosecution of Donald Rumsfeld: A Prosecution by Book.”

    A criminal investigation and prosecution of the torture conspirators is a necessity, not a choice. As Maj. Gen. Antonio M. Taguba, who investigated the Abu Ghraib scandal for the Pentagon, declared in June 2008: “There is no longer any doubt as to whether the current (Bush) administration has committed war crimes. The only question that remains to be answered is whether those who ordered the use of torture will be held to account.”

    Unless government officials know that consequences follow from such abuses, they will break the law again. This is why President Obama is wrong when he argues that prosecution is looking backward; it is not. Prosecution is a means of preventing torture in the future. Even though he signed an executive order ending the use of torture, that order can be undone by the next president…”

    http://roomfordebate.blogs.nytimes.com/2009/03/02/a-truth-commission-for-th

  7. Surely, enough legal and constitutional scholars could form an assemblage to use their collective expertise in recommending a case to Holder, Congress et al. warranting the launching of an official investigation.

    If I were a lawyer who took an oath to uphold the rule of law and the U.S. Constitution, I would consider myself ethically obligated to do all I could to seek justice for any violations of the Constitution that included punishing those involved and that served as a strong deterrent to similar acts by the current and future administrations.

  8. This is it for me. I have vacillated between full-blown prosecution and congressional hearings in an effort to get the truth, even if it meant compromising on prosecutions. No longer. This information, along with the legal memos released today in which John Yoo literally tossed the Constitution out the window, make it clear that prosecution is absolutely essential. I apologize in particular to Jill for sometimes suggesting that her views on this issue were a bit over the top. She was right and I was wrong. This country will stand for nothing unless it stands for the law. Redemption compels prosecution.

  9. I am still catching up after being out of town this weekend, but I couldn’t read this posting without commenting. Jill, Buddha and Mespo(I hope I didn’t miss anyone) I agree with all of you that this remarkable admission is indeed additional evidence that we need to investigate and prosecute the people who authorized the torture and those that authorized the destruction of the tapes. with that being said, I don’t understand why we should believe that the tapes are really destroyed. If they lied all along about the existence of the tapes and then lied about destroying only two of them, I would not be surprised if their are tapes still available in some remote CIA offsite location. Without the fear of prosecution, we will never know the real truth.

  10. Yes, Virginia, we now have a President Doofus:

    ‘Fuzzy Math’ on War Funding.

    Obama Begs Moscow “We will scrap missile-defense for help with Iran”.

    Dow drops another 300 points; off 2,500 just since Obama inaugeration, 3,500 since Obama election, and 6,500 since Obama nomination – investor message – WE DON’T TRUST or BELIEVE IN Obama’s fruitcake answer to our problems.

  11. A little wisdom from the Virginia Courts on the spoliation of evidence:

    “In general, a party’s conduct, so far as it indicates
    his own belief in the weakness of his
    cause, may be used against him as an admission,
    subject of course to any explanations he
    may be able to make removing that significance
    from his conduct… “[Conduct showing
    the] [c]onceal[ment] or destr[uction] [of]
    evidential material is…admissible; in particular
    the destruction (spoliation) of documents
    as evidence of an admission that their contents
    are as alleged by the opponents.” 1
    Greenleaf Ev. (16 Ed.), sec. 195, at 325.
    Neece v. Neece, 104 Va. 343, 348, 51 S.E. 739,
    740-41 (1905); Wolfe v. Virginia Birth-Related
    Neurological Injury Compensation Program, 40
    Va.App. 565, 580-583, 580 S.E.2d 467,475 – 476
    (Va.App.,2003).

  12. Buddha,

    I do think this is a good reason to begin war crimes prosecution. This information will come out. We can be on top of it or continually shoveling the sand while sinking the US’s reputation further into a hole. You know there’s a bunch of tapes. Think about the interrogations and how many languages were spoken during them–languages the US doesn’t really have that many translaters for. You know they were taped for review, just for translation purposes alone. This would be a really good time to start dealing with the past before the weight of so much evidence overwhelms the present.

  13. This shouldn’t surprise anyone. What people need to worry about is what the CIA is doing on US soil. I know well since I was in a family for more than 26 years. Their job early on was to launder money for CIA operations and those involved. It wasn’t until the early 90’s where they started up a new business in Florida to airship tons of Cocaine into the US and also be involved in CIA Rendition flights. They are part of a huge fleet of more than 100 planes involved in shipping drugs Internationally.

    The family often bragged about being a CIA Asset to answer questions of why they weren’t concerned about being prosecuted even if it involved murder. Also, the crowd they run around with who involved in this mess are also involved with 911. I was told in some detail about 911 back in 1996 only then they were reviewing three sites with one being New York. State run Terrorism isn’t limited to only 911 as I also knew from the family about other terrorist acts done on US soil as well.

    Meet the family:
    Mexico drug plane used for US ‘rendition’ flights: report – Sep 4, 2008
    http://afp.google.com/article/ALeqM5j6QonBKKMo2gw1e3ql-xUcQEZbVg

    Clyde O’Connor is my ex-sister-in-laws brother. Her Husband is my ex-wife’s brother and guess who filled out their business paperwork for entering the business in Florida? Obama while working at the law firm per the family assisted in starting up their business. Corruption, Drugs and harming others is all in the family, to me dismay, my youngest son is involved with Rezko and unless he doesn’t get out of this mess will end up in Federal Prison.

    Check this out:
    The investigation as to who was responsible for authorizing the transactions led directly back to former CIA director Buzzy Krongard
    http://www.whatreallyhappened.com/illegaltrades.html

    Marty Didier
    Northbrook, IL

  14. Our prisoners have always maintained that nearly every interrogation was taped, so I’m guessing there’s more than 92 that were destroyed. This certainly does show the intent to destroy evidence. Still, I’m willing to bet there are original tapes and transcripts that could be wrung out of the CIA by a very agreesive prosecutor. I hope a special prosecutor is appointed to take this on. My understanding is, as of right now the case only concerned whether the CIA had destroyed evidence/failed to turn over evidence that it was require to have produced. It is my hope that a new prosecutor will investigate the torture that was shown on the tapes as well as the CIA’s failure to produce the required tapes.

  15. Thank you, Professor, for promoting this to it’s own thread.

    Immediate prosecution for war crimes is critical as now we have further evidence that critical evidence is being systematically destroyed in hopes of avoiding or sabotaging said prosecutions.

    CIA! Once again, We the People aren’t as interested in the sociopaths you employ, but rather those who gave the orders to turn them loose. You’d be better served by cooperating in this pursuit of justice than in hindering it or do you enjoy the prospect of your bailiwick being assigned to other departments of government? DHS will be glad to assume more of your duties I suspect. Got to justify those budgets after all.

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